Indian police
© Reuters / Adnan Abidi
Indian police
A married couple and two others were viciously beaten and murdered in a small village in India after allegedly practicing witchcraft.

The brutal murder happened on Sunday morning in the Siskari area of India's northeastern Jharkhand state.

Witnesses told local media that about a dozen assailants broke into the victims' homes. Two men and two women were dragged outside, where they were beaten with sticks and stabbed. Some reports say the victims' throats were slit. The attackers had their faces covered, and fled the village after the crime.

All the victims were in their early 60s, and a married couple was among those killed.

Police have launched an investigation and believe the murder was premeditated. It appears that the attackers thought "the victims were involved in witchcraft," the superintendent of police, Anjani Kumar Jha, told ANI News.
"Crime seems to have happened because of superstitious beliefs."
There were no reports of immediate arrests in connection with the case.

Last month, a mother and daughter were beaten and hacked to death in another village in Jharkhand after they were accused of being witches.